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Looking for Jefferson Presidential 18 yr bourbon


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Had the Jefferson Presidential 18yr at The Hermitage Hotel in Nashville. Smooth as silk, I'm trying to find somewhere around Southern California that pours it, any help?

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It’s been out there for a long time. Probably not that much available and I have no knowledge about SoCal bars. But I wouldn’t get my hopes up!

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fishnbowljoe

Yeah, I had a bottle or two long ago. It was good, but not eye opening. It actually was a bit of a disappointment after having the JPS 17 yr.
 

IIRC, there was some controversy as to it’s actual provenance. The JPS 17 was SW distillate. The JPS 18 ?????  There was speculation it was SW juice, or that it contained some SW juice, or that it was aged at SW, or that it was aged in SW barrels, or that ....... and so on and so on. Not worth the bother IMHO.

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BottledInBond
1 hour ago, fishnbowljoe said:

Yeah, I had a bottle or two long ago. It was good, but not eye opening. It actually was a bit of a disappointment after having the JPS 17 yr.
 

IIRC, there was some controversy as to it’s actual provenance. The JPS 17 was SW distillate. The JPS 18 ?????  There was speculation it was SW juice, or that it contained some SW juice, or that it was aged at SW, or that it was aged in SW barrels, or that ....... and so on and so on. Not worth the bother IMHO.

The label on the JPS18 label did say “aged in SW barrels” on it. There were quite a few batches of the 18, maybe like 20+? There was an interview or two where Trey had admitted years ago that somewhere in that run he started blending in some non-SW juice. I think there is a general assumption that the early batches were all SW and pretty similar in general to the JPS17. I had bottles from batches 4 & 8 and thought they were very nice. I never bought any “double digit” batch bottles just because I assumed them to be somewhat lesser quality. 
 

In general for the OP, this stuff is long gone in most areas, like the vast majority of anything that came from SW. If you do find it or any of its SW cousins, expect to pay significant prices these days, as SW bourbon hunting can be a deep and lonely rabbit hole. If you want to torture yourself, SW stuff you can keep on your radar includes these JPS17/18, older releases of the Van Winkle line, older dusty Weller, early releases of Michter’s 10/20, older dusty Old Fitzgerald, some Willett WFE bottling (needles in haystacks here), age stated dusty Black Maple Hill, and the most recent release of anything officially known to be SW juice, the John Fitzgerald 375ml release in the fancy red box. There are others as well, with varying degrees of confidence or clarity as to the provenance. 
 

For what it’s worth, personally I don’t think SW equals the “best” bourbon. That place made a lot of whiskey. Some was well aged and put in higher end products. Plenty was young and made for bottom shelf value brands. So just because it was distilled at SW doesn’t mean it was good to me. Just like BT today, the same place produces GTS and WLW, that also cranks our a crapload of Ancient Age, Benchmark, etc. and I don’t see any reason future generations should be hunting those, just because GTS/WLW are awesome.......

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If you're looking for the SW release, see if you can order online as I think California can receive shipments from quite a few online retailers.  Depending on your location, try K+L, they typically have some rare/curious stuff.

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Saul_cooperstein

My memories of the 18 are that there was a batch delineation in which early batches where pretty good but that at some specific point it took a big step down (I think there were rumors that began blending...). Can’t remember exactly what the cut of was but the 18 I had was from low teens batch numbers. I thought JPS17 was decent but not great. Not memorable for me. I have a few ounces left to pour from a batch 9 bottle I think. Will revisit sometime. 

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Saul_cooperstein

Also - Besides bars, if really have to have something SW, cheapest and easiest place to source is probably European auction houses and the late 80’s very early 90’s bottles of rebel yell. 

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ThirstyinOhio
On 10/9/2020 at 8:44 AM, BottledInBond said:

For what it’s worth, personally I don’t think SW equals the “best” bourbon. That place made a lot of whiskey. Some was well aged and put in higher end products. Plenty was young and made for bottom shelf value brands. So just because it was distilled at SW doesn’t mean it was good to me. Just like BT today, the same place produces GTS and WLW, that also cranks our a crapload of Ancient Age, Benchmark, etc. and I don’t see any reason future generations should be hunting those, just because GTS/WLW are awesome.......

I couldn't agree more with this statement!  

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This is the JPS18 I tried.  I thought it was outstanding.  Easily in my top 5.  I agree with the statement above, however.  Batch, not single barrel.  Does say it was "distilled from wheat" and "aged in Stitzel-Weller Barrels".  That last part could definitely interpreted in different ways.

20170930_175719.jpg

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Early on it was Wheated whiskey with some very unclear connection SW. Later on Zoehler publically admitted he was putting rye based bourbon in the bottle which may not have been the much ballyhooed SW Bourbon. After that point who knows. And not long after that I quit buying Jefferson in general.

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Harry in WashDC
On 10/14/2020 at 3:48 PM, BourbonJoe said:

There is no mistaking Stitzel-Weller juice. 

I have no horse in this race. BUT, the back of my head wants to know IF nowadays anything claiming to be SW is no more SW than  a dry martini that has had a dry vermouth cork waved over the coupe.?

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3 hours ago, tanstaafl2 said:

Early on it was Wheated whiskey with some very unclear connection SW. Later on Zoehler publically admitted he was putting rye based bourbon in the bottle which may not have been the much ballyhooed SW Bourbon. After that point who knows. And not long after that I quit buying Jefferson in general.

This is one of the many reasons why you are a smart man and that I like you.

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I still have 2 bottles. I opened one up last year for Thanksgiving and enjoyed it with friends and family throughout the Holidays.  A special bottle for sure, I still prefer WLW but, it was enjoyed by all who I drank it with.  

 

Good luck on your hunt,,,  

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SW juice is indeed distinctive, and therefore special.    I have an open dusty bottle of Old Weller Antique,  distilled at SW,  that I brought to the beach this summer for our neighbors whose daughter's marriage was being celebrated.   Sipping it now -  and its hard to think of anything quite like it.  It has an almost raspberry sherbet caste to it.  Delicious.    After this is gone the SW well will be almost dry -  I have an old Fitz BIB that is awaiting  a special guest and/or occasion,  as well as a old Lot B.  No mas.   These days when I want wheated bourbon the choice is McKenzie's.    But I won't deny it - there were giants in those days.   

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  • 1 month later...

Having consumed considerable amounts of both the 17 and 18 year old editions, I can tell you that the 17 is light years better than the 18.  I would love to have a case of the 17 year today.  Great bourbon.

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